My Husband Gained Custody of His Child After Her Mother Died, Why Does He Still Owe Child Support?

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“My husband has a 10 year old daughter from a previous relationship (never married though). He has always been involved in her life and has paid court ordered child support in the state of Texas from the time that she was a baby until April 2006 when her mother, the custodial parent, passed away. His daughter had always lived with her mother, and her parents, and the household received government assistance as well as child support. Upon the death of the custodial parent, my husband’s daughter came to live with him (prior to our marriage) and he called the Texas Attorney General to begin proceedings in order to cease child support. We are now in September 2006 and we are still getting letters saying he is delinquent on his child support. He calls once a month or more and talks to a different person every time? Who at first says “oh this case is closed” but he then gives them another case number and they find that it is “on hold”. How can we get this resolved once and for all? Do we need to obtain a lawyer to handle it? Is there something that we need to file with the courts to have him officially named “custodial parent”?

[NOTE: Articles and answers on DearEsq., while written and published by lawyers, do not constitute legal advice, and no attorney-client relationship is formed by your reading of this information. You should always consult with an attorney for any legal situations.]

Thanks for you help!”

He may still owe the back government assistance amounts, even though his daughter is now with him. That amount is owed to the State, and not to his daughter or the estate of mother. Likely any debt to the estate of Mother would be with daughter, so I’d be less concerned about that.

It probably will take a Court order to settle it all. Is there an arrearage owed for public assistance, and if so how much? Is there an order establishing custody, and if not it just needs to be done?

It just needs to get done. The case needs to get in the proper Court’s hearing calendar, and you just need a few minutes of the Court’s time with the State’s attorney properly noticed and present. The forms may be available on line, and you just have to file the right ones with the right clerk and get a hearing date (and husband has to appear – maybe even by phone). If you can’t figure out how to do that, then you might need to hire an attorney just to get it done.

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Author: House Attorney

A house attorney has answered this question.

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